Beijing Increases Pressure on Hong Kong as Protests Escalate

  • The regime of Chinese President Xi Jinping has declared null and void a decision of the Hong Kong Supreme Court.
  • In October, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam banned the wearing of masks, invoking emergency provisions.
  • Hong Kong is “sliding into an abyss of chaos,” said Ambassador Liu Xiaoming to the press in London.

The Chinese regime is putting more pressure on Hong Kong following the ongoing demonstrations in the Chinese territory. After five months of increasingly violent protests against the pro-Beijing executive, the Chinese government has still not managed to get a return to calm in the autonomous territory.

Anti-mask or anti-masking laws are legislative or penal initiatives that seek to stop individuals from concealing their faces, who do so often to not be identified or out of religious practice. On October 4, 2019, the HKSAR Government invoked the Emergency Regulations Ordinance to implement an anti-mask law in response to ongoing protests.

Beijing suffered a setback on Monday when the Hong Kong High Court overturned the ban on masks in demonstrations, which was declared last month by the local government. Without delay, the regime of Chinese President Xi Jinping has declared null and void this decision of the Hong Kong court.

“Whether the laws of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region comply with the Basic Law of Hong Kong can only be judged and decided by the standing committee of the National People’s Congress,” Jian Tiewei, the spokesman for the Chinese legislative affairs commission stressed. “No other authority has the right to make judgments and decisions,”
he added, following the Hong Kong High Court’s ruling that the local executive’s decision was “unconstitutional.”

To avoid being identified, and avoid legal action, Hong Kong demonstrators have been in the habit of protesting with masks since the beginning of their demonstrations in June. In October, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam banned the wearing of masks, invoking emergency provisions dating from the colonial era in 1922, and which had not been applied since riots at the end of the 1960s. Applauded by Beijing, this ban was rejected by the protesters from the word go.

Democratic activist Joshua Wong saw the Beijing warning as a sign that the communist regime was determined to reinterpret the Hong Kong constitution as it saw fit. “When the state loses, she changes the rules of game. Beijing never intends to play by the rules,” he lamented on Twitter.

MP Dennis Kwok warned that plundering the Hong Kong courts of their powers would mean “the end” of the “one country, two systems” principle that led to the handover of the territory to China in 1997. The Hong Kong courts have repeatedly ruled on the basic law since that date, he argued.

“One country, two systems” is a constitutional principle formulated by Deng Xiaoping, the Paramount Leader of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), for the reunification of China during the early 1980s. He suggested that there would be only one China, but distinct Chinese regions such as Hong Kong and Macau could retain their own economic and administrative systems.

Hong Kong “slips into the abyss”

In Hong Kong, Beijing has a garrison of several thousand men, which is not supposed to leave its barracks, but may have to restore order at the request of the local authorities. Armed with brooms, a few dozens of them came out “spontaneously” Saturday to clean the streets of the damage left by protesters. The Hong Kong government has said that it has not requested this intervention, a first since the beginning of the crisis.

Through its ambassador in London, the Chinese regime warned that it would not remain “idle” if the situation in the territory became “uncontrollable.” Hong Kong is “sliding into an abyss of chaos,” said Ambassador Liu Xiaoming to the press. He added that “external forces that have indulged and fanned violence in Hong Kong cannot absolve themselves of the responsibility for the recent escalation of violence.” China has “enough determination and power to end the uprising,” he threatened.

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Vincent Ferdinand

News reporting is my thing. My view of what is happening in our world is colored by my love of history and how the past influences events taking place in the present time.  I like reading politics and writing articles. It was said by Geoffrey C. Ward, "Journalism is merely history's first draft." Everyone who writes about what is happening today is indeed, writing a small part of our history.

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